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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for opinions/advice. I'm currently waiting to get my service dog prospect (standard poodle, parents are 22in 35lb and almost 24in 48lb) . Have just had news from my preferred breeder
a litter is due in early March so pups would be ready to go early/mid-May. If a pup from that litter doesn't work out, one of the breeder's other girls is waiting ultrasound confirmation (and that would be the breeder's only litters for the year). I'm totally happy with this breeder, she does puppy culture and I've seen what she does with her pups on videos etc, and almost bought a pup from her last year (but pulled out because I couldn't handle the idea of getting a new dog yet after losing my last dog).

Here's the situation though, I'm also considering getting a 2-year old champion silky terrier from a local breeder. He is ready to go now, I'm hoping to meet him sometime in this coming week (there's just been a ton of rain/storms almost non-stop here and it's an hour drive, which is a lot for me). He is very well socialized, does well at shows, does well with other dogs, including other male dogs (and he's entire but he would be desexed prior to coming to me). He even flies well and does well in his crate. He currently lives with at least 3 other dogs, a 6 month old human baby and 4 year old human child. They are letting him go because the council limits where they live are 4 dogs max and they want to keep a girl to breed from instead of him. He is house trained and crate trained.

I'm thinking of getting him, and also getting my SD prospect pup in a few months time. I'm assuming he's already pretty obedient, but will see when I meet him. And if I connect with him I'll ask for a trial first.

What are people's thoughts on getting an adult well-socialized probably well-trained dog just a few months before getting a puppy?

I would be doing training with the adult dog--obedience and trick training--and I'm assuming his manners he already has would help the SD pup learn, too? That is definitely not the only reason I would be getting him, but what are people's thoughts on if this adult dog would help or harm my potential SD's development?

He's small, so he wouldn't be much of an extra burden on me food-cost wise or bath-wise (he could fit in a sink for baths). Grooming would be a cost, but I'm hoping to learn to do that myself. Extra training would be also be an energy cost, but not as bad as getting two puppies so close together, right?

I'm open to all wisdom! And anything I haven't thought of! Pros and cons. Thanks so much!
 

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He sounds darling! What a jackpot for you.

I'd just be a little worried about committing to a puppy before giving my new dog time to get acclimated and making sure all is going smoothly.

Could you move your deposit to a future litter if, after a month or two, you felt you needed more time?

I know the general rule with rescues is 3 months to get fully settled. I assume that would apply to rehoming situations, too.

If all's on track, though, he sounds like he could be a wonderful mentor for a puppy.
 

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It sounds good to me, the puppy will adapt to him and since he has been exposed well to outside circumstances I think it will go well. I think it would be good to speak with his breeder and see how she feels. He will be considerably small than a standard poodle so you will need to be cautious when they play but other than that sounds fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you! I would prefer not waiting for a later litter, because the breeder isn't having anymore poodle litters this year after the two due in March/April.

Great idea about asking the breeders. I think I might ask both the silky breeder and the spoo breeder and get their thoughts on it.

I'm also not sure if it's such a good idea, as because the spoo will be a service dog prospect I really will need to focus fully on her/him. And I've never had two dogs at the same time as an adult. I've had two dogs as a child, but back then (living in Australia) we kept our dogs outside, and there was definitely a dynamic of one dog ruling the roost. I would prefer that not to happen this time, and my dogs would be inside so I'm unused to that dynamic. I would also be taking to them to the dog beach. And even though there is a Lot of room because the tide goes out and leaves sooo much room to run, it's still unfenced so having a new adult dog off-leash as well as a puppy might be challenging as I'm used to only needing to keep a full eye on one dog, not two! (I would still only go when the beach is fairly quiet, and all the dogs I've seen there so far pretty much ignore each other and just stick with their owners. But it's still a risk).

Hmm. Lots to think about. What's it like for you who are experienced in owning two dogs? How are things different? I would put time into taking them out separately and training them separately, but sometimes would like to take them out together. And again, I've never had two dogs indoors before. Only one dog.
 

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When I brought a new puppy into my household with an established adult dog, it was still extra work and time, but not a deal breaker. I had to make sure to give the reigning dog time and attention away from the puppy. This meant special outings on her own. Could the dogs go to off-leash areas separately until trained to recall, or one stay in the car at a time?
 

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I wouldn’t, even though this little silky terrier sounds like a wonderful opportunity. Training a dog to be used as a service dog is time consuming and requires that the dog be focused on you.

Don’t assume the terrier is well trained for anything other than conformation. This dog will require time and training by you to help it adapt to your household and needs. It may not know basics like sit or down as these are not required for conformation.

If you are training a service dog, you will be taking it everywhere for socializing. You will want to focus 100% on the puppy to make sure it’s a positive and effective experience. Best to leave the terrier at home. Same with taking the puppy to classes and training it to behave when out in public. Training a service dog takes a lot more effort than it does a pet.

What would you do if you discover the new poodle puppy doesn’t work out as a service dog. Maybe it doesn’t have the right temperament after your careful selection and training? Would you be able to afford a third dog?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I wouldn’t, even though this little silky terrier sounds like a wonderful opportunity. Training a dog to be used as a service dog is time consuming and requires that the dog be focused on you.

Don’t assume the terrier is well trained for anything other than conformation. This dog will require time and training by you to help it adapt to your household and needs. It may not know basics like sit or down as these are not required for conformation.

If you are training a service dog, you will be taking it everywhere for socializing. You will want to focus 100% on the puppy to make sure it’s a positive and effective experience. Best to leave the terrier at home. Same with taking the puppy to classes and training it to behave when out in public. Training a service dog takes a lot more effort than it does a pet.

What would you do if you discover the new poodle puppy doesn’t work out as a service dog. Maybe it doesn’t have the right temperament after your careful selection and training? Would you be able to afford a third dog?
Good question. I’m not sure I would want/be able to handle a third dog. I’m pretty sure I would keep the poodle whether he/she washed or made it as a SD.

Thanks so much for your thoughts! They help :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
When I brought a new puppy into my household with an established adult dog, it was still extra work and time, but not a deal breaker. I had to make sure to give the reigning dog time and attention away from the puppy. This meant special outings on her own. Could the dogs go to off-leash areas separately until trained to recall, or one stay in the car at a time?
Yes I would be taking them out separately. Which I guess I’m not sure I would have the capacity to do because I do have a disability...
 

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What would be your reason for getting two? From your follow-up comment, it doesn't actually really sound like you want two.
 

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What would be your reason for getting two? From your follow-up comment, it doesn't actually really sound like you want two.
Thanks for this message! I’ve been spending the time since trying to work out exactly what my reasons are. For a start, I’ll say that I may sound like I don’t want two because I’m trying to think through and convince myself of the reasons why two dogs are a bad idea. I have a hard time making decisions and go back and forth a lot. So am trying to convince myself of both sides and really get down to motives as well as figure out my own capacity to train them each and give them each what they deserve.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
And I’m also nervous about potentially having conflict between dogs, as I’ve not personally owned two dogs that get along before. Can you bond with two dogs strongly and have them both get along, if you handle things right?
 

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And I’m also nervous about potentially having conflict between dogs, as I’ve not personally owned two dogs that get along before. Can you bond with two dogs strongly and have them both get along, if you handle things right?
Yes and yes. But I'd also be hesitant.

It's so fun getting to know a dog....and also so challenging. And I don't personally think I could physically handle getting two so close together, even if emotionally I was ready for it.

If I were to get two at once, I think it would be like my parents did. They rescued a pair of seniors from the same household:

464411


(Had to share a photo because they're SO cute.)
 

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And I’m also nervous about potentially having conflict between dogs, as I’ve not personally owned two dogs that get along before. Can you bond with two dogs strongly and have them both get along, if you handle things right?
Think about human siblings. Some women are close to their sisters; others constantly at war.

We've found that it goes that way with pets too. Some are open to new guys being added to our pack; others are never friendly, and still others are indifferent.
 

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And I’m also nervous about potentially having conflict between dogs, as I’ve not personally owned two dogs that get along before. Can you bond with two dogs strongly and have them both get along, if you handle things right?
I have almost always had two dogs at once. I had strong bonds with each dog: once I realized I could have no expectations they’d be anything alike. You have to accept two completely different personalities, likes and dislikes, ways they each interact with you and so much more. And yes, they all got along very well with the exception of one dog who became nasty to my poodle after 4.5 years.

Right now I have three dogs, all of whom I’m deeply bonded with. Over the last year I have spent so much time with my girl that I rescued a year ago, but also had to find just as much time for my poodle who I’d had for 5 years. It was tough in the beginning but definitely do-able. But my dogs were both older already. Poodle was 5.5 yrs when I brought home my poodle mix, who shortly afterward turned 7.

It’s easier bringing a puppy into the mix, but don’t be fooled: it’s hard work in the beginning.

With all that being said, I would do it. I think by the time you get your spoo puppy, the Silky would be established in your home and with you. I’ve not experienced a super strong bond with adopting an adult within the first few months before. It took me about 8-9 months with my mix, and gets stronger each day... a year later.

Whatever you decide, I wish you the best. And either way you go, people here will support you when you have questions, need advice or just want to rant or rave. Best of luck to you.
 

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And I didn't feel much of a bond at all with my puppy until she was about 6 months old. And even now, at 8 months, I know we still have a long way to go.

So I wouldn't worry about the bonding part. That's always going to be a mysterious journey.
 

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Its really not difficult having more than one dog. When you have an adult trained dog and bring the puppy in they won't be in constant contact with each other. The puppy will need training and a crate and or pen too, so they will be mostly seeing one another thru gated off areas. Once the pup is in the house and comfortable with each other you can introduce them more and more. Both dogs will bond to you and again in the beginning the pup will be trained separately but once he can walk on a leash a nice walk together is also good for them . I've had up to 4 dogs in my home, they have all been different with different needs but I've been bonded to each and they to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for all your replies!

Next question: has anyone ever had a silky terrier or similar type of terrier with a standard poodle, and if so, how did they get along?

This silky has always gotten along with the other silkies in his house, whether puppies or adults. And his breeder says he does fine with other dogs (big or small) in dog parks. But I do know some terriers have issues with larger dogs. I met him yesterday and he seemed GREAT in terms of not being distracted by anything passing by as we sat and talked. He was interested in a young child who walked past (maybe 3 or 4 years old) because he likes children, but he didn't make a fuss, just tried to go near her. He ignored the ibis (Australian bird) walking past, and just watched some people carrying a large colorful inflatable beach thing without reacting. People with walkers were rolling by and he ignored them. So all of that's great.

But he did get a little tetchy with a small poodle cross-breed that walked past on a lead and barked and pulled at it. His breeder said that's the first time he's barked at another dog.

With a pet dog I wouldn't normally worry, but because this lil guy might be the older brother of my service dog prospect puppy, I'm just wanting have the best chance of them getting along. So, has anyone had experience with owning a silky and a poodle or at least a terrier and a poodle at the same time?

Thanks so much! I really appreciate the time you all take to reply.
 
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